Category Archives: Gear Talk

The Growler Pack

Duluth Pack has a new product!
We have collaborated with local brewery, Fitgers Brewhouse, to bring craft beer out into the wilderness. The Growler Pack is what was created.

Photo by Maxwell McGruder

It is an insulated protective case for your growler. It’ll protect it from light and keep the beer cooler longer. It folds down tightly to keep the growler safe while it’s attached to your bike, canoe, across your shoulders on a hike, or along for a portage. The dry bag style closure can also fold down to be used as a koozie.

Photo by Maxwell McGruder

As our Marketing Director said, ”They’re the grandfathers of creating what’s going on with craft beer, and we’re the grandfathers of making packs,” so it was an obvious partnership. We’re excited about this new product.

Check it out on our website!

Photo by Maxwell McGruder

Photo by Maxwell McGruder

 

 

The Market Tote from Duluth Pack

The Very Fashionable Market Tote

“Oh, I love your bag; is that from Nordstrom?”, to which I proudly replied, “Nope–it’s from Minnesota!” • Amanda

The Market Tote from Duluth Pack

“I got this bag for a friend who teaches yoga and moves from gym to gym all day.” • Bikerarcher

“I have been on the lookout for a sturdy and chic work tote that I can use on weekends as well.” • Baghound

Duluth Pack Market Tote: The official bag of Dallas’ design cognoscenti.” • Joslyn Taylor

Sunset over Ice

Avoid Cabin Fever during the Leap Day Blizzard

Snow has finally come to Duluth, and many of us in the north woods are enjoying a snow day as we hunker down during this leap day blizzard. What are you going to do as the storm rages and you fight off the feeling of cabin fever? Let me throw out some ideas to keep you from going stir crazy and at the same time continuing to dream of open water.

Make it a movie day – Pop in a Cliff Jacobsen or Bill Mason video in the DVD player and escape to the lakes and rivers of the north. It is a great way to pick up some new skills or just revel in the scenic beauty captured on each disc.

Condition the leather on your canoe packs – Grab the Lexol conditioner and rub it into all the leather on your packs, really soak those straps. Yeah, I know this doesn’t sound like a great way to spend a free day, but it will pay dividends when the ice melts.

Get the snowshoes ready – rest assured at some point this wind is going to lie down, and you can get out and play in the fresh powder. Tighten those bindings and plan on shoeing away in Jay Cooke State Park or up the Superior Hiking Trail.  Both have great trails to test out the snowshoes, and don’t forget to take your camera along to capture what might be the only storm of 2012.

Dive into good book – My favorites are from Sigurd Olson or John Krakauer. With Olson you can relax and enjoy the soothing picture he paints of the wilderness complete with sights and sounds. Reading Krakauer gives you the vicarious experience of high drama adventure.

Spread the maps out and route a trip – Now this sounds more like it! Stretch all your maps out on the floor and plan a trip for the summer of 2012. Choose an entry point, book it at Recreation.gov, and if you have any questions give an expert at the Duluth Pack store a call.

There you go, now you have a few ideas to help you spend your snow day. My plan is to grab the camera and get some shots of the gently falling snow. OK, maybe not so gently.

The Wanderer pack high up on a Minnesota trail

The story of a highly experienced Duluth Pack Wanderer

The Wanderer pack high up on a Minnesota trail

Please allow me to share letter below, it is one of the many we receive from our fans who like to write and tell us about their experiences with their Duluth Pack. We love to know how you are using your pack, and how it is holding up on trail. The letter appears unedited and in its entirety. Also, please note that I address some of the suggestions at the end of the letter.

I’ve owned the Wanderer since 2007, abusing it as my field pack for work and carrying it as my “man-bag” almost daily.  I’ve taken this bag with me nearly every day of the past five years, worn it for 16+ hours at a time with 20+ lbs in it, and have used it in all four seasons in northern Minnesota.  It’s been stepped on, slammed in doors, dragged through the mud and over rocks and between trees, submerged, frozen, dropped, thrown, and barfed on (I have young kids).

The cotton canvas is a great material.  It’s durable, quiet, comfortable to wear in the hot summer, dries quickly when wet, and is easy to wash.  The only wear on the pack is slight fraying of the shoulder straps, and a dime-sized hole on the outside of one of the outer water bottle pockets.  (Where the water bottles in the pack rub against trees).  In rain, the contents of the pack stay dry, to mostly dry.  The stitching, leather straps, leather cinch cord, rivets, and buckles have also held up perfectly.  The cotton has faded, but that’s to be expected.

It’s a good-sized daypack.  The pack will easily hold all my field gear for a day’s work (lunch, water bottles, camera, GPS, maps, flagging, tools, foldable shovel, field notebook, field guides, fleece vest, rain jacket, etc.).  Any clothing items that don’t fit in the main compartment can be rolled up, tucked under the main flap, and secured with the long straps.  Shoulder straps can be lengthened to accommodate larger winter jackets, or shortened to wear shirtless.  The outer bottle pockets add width to the pack and sometimes make it difficult to squeeze between trees (or between people at a grocery store), but it’s usually not an issue.

SUGGESTIONS:

–This pack has an unpadded back, and bulky/pointy items (field notebooks, equipment, tools, etc.) should be packed deliberately between soft items (or on the outside of the cargo pocket) to maximize the user’s comfort for extended use.  Sometimes I find myself packing an extra article of clothing with which to pad equipment…not a big deal, but sometimes annoying at the end of a long day.  A flat “map” pocket built in the main cargo pocket (on the strap-side of the pack) could be used for holding padding.  (If a back pad was included that could double as a diaper-changing pad , it’d get super bonus points…)

–This pack is not particularly suited to carrying heavy weight for long periods of time.  For most users, this may not be an issue, but a waist belt and pack stays (to transfer pack weight from the shoulders to the hips/waist) might be a welcome modification for those that carry heavy loads for long periods of time.  A sternum strap might also be nice…

–This pack might benefit from some strategically placed leather patches on areas that are likely to receive heavy wear or repeated abrasion.  (Bottom of pack, bottom of water bottle pockets)

Overall, the Wanderer is a super daypack for most users/uses, with quality materials and workmanship and a very nice style.  Those looking for a pack to carry weightier or bulkier items may want to look to a more modern pack, or petition Duluth Pack for some upgrades.  :-)  This pack is worth the cost, and I love supporting local business.  Thanks, Duluth Pack! ~ D

D, thank you so much for taking the time to write and share your Wanderer story with us. Rest assured that we are listening and while there is no single pack that can address every need we are trying to make our bags the most versatile in the field.

First, let me point out that we have two daypacks that have a map pocket hidden under the flap. Both the Guide Pack and the Rambler have a zippered pocket under the main flap, which work great for small pocket guides and maps.

Second, while wear and tear is not covered under our lifetime warranty we will repair bags that have become worn.  Additionally, we will customize bags with leather patches or heavy weight canvas in what you see as potentially high wear areas. While a leather bottom will add weight and cost to a bag, it is a great idea to add durability and good looks to a pack.

Third, let me point you to the Bushcrafter pack, designed especially for Duluth Pack by Mike Lummio of the Bushcraft Northwest. This pack is slimmer in design and slides easily between trees and tight spaces on trail. The Bushcrafter also includes some of the features you were looking for: padded straps, waist belt, and sternum strap. It is designed for heavy loads over a period of days and is getting great reviews from those who have put it to the test.

Thanks again for taking the time to share with us. Anyone who has a story to tell or a question to ask, may send their emails to me at: bradp@duluthpack.com. If I can’t get the answer, I know how to find the answer.

Mossy Oakª Introduction

Duluth Pack Introduces Mossy Oak® Camouflage Series

Officially licensed by Mossy Oak®, Duluth Pack now offers their quality manufactured products in camouflage canvas.

For more than 20 years sportsmen have relied on the Mossy Oak® name for high quality camouflage apparel and accessories. Now outdoorsmen can get their favorite Duluth Pack backpacks, gun cases, hunting accessories, and canoe packs in that same high quality camouflage canvas.

Duluth Pack has taken the products most requested by sportsmen and begun producing a line of products with Mossy Oak’s® best-selling New Break-Up® pattern. This new line of camouflage will include, but not be limited to: pistol rugs, shotgun and rifle cases, all-day lumbar pack, hand-warmer, range bag, standard daypack, the rugged Bushcrafter pack, with the always-popular Rambler and Wanderer daypacks. All other Duluth Pack products will soon join this highly anticipated line, and can be made to order at any time.

Duluth Pack also offers their handcrafted products in 14 different colors of canvas, six colors and patterns of wool, in addition to traditional leather and American Bison leather. This new line in camouflage offers a unique and different option to sportsmen heading out into the field or the duck blind. President of Duluth Pack, Tom Sega states: “The New Break-Up® camouflage fabric from Mossy Oak® will round out an already excellent line of hunting gear.”

About Mossy Oak

Avid hunter and current CEO Toxey Haas founded the Mossy Oak Company in 1986.  Mr. Haas gathered up a bag of leaves, sticks, and dirt, went into the local fabric company, and dumped the contents onto the counter. His request; “can you print a fabric that looks like the stuff in this bag?” Mr. Haas realized good camouflage patterns must integrate realistic looking environmental elements as well as shadows and layers from the natural surroundings. Today, Mossy Oak has a large number of camouflage patterns and has grown to embody an outdoor lifestyle.